Category Archives: Fitness

The Craziest Year of My Life: 2012

So much happened in 2012, that looking back upon it all, I’m dizzy.  The day job, which I rarely mention publicly, has been moving in the right direction. I’ve had the opportunity to learn a little about project management and my work is improving for it. I’m looking forward to more learning and new projects in the coming year.  The family situation had some serious bumps which will not ever be forgotten. I try to hold it close and apply it to my daily life to make better decisions. The kidlets and spouse went through some of those bumps as well, but they’re back to their old selves. The Girl is excelling in school but still experiencing shyness issues, and the Boy continues to outshine me in the independence department which makes some days really interesting. The spouse continues to make me proud, and the cats, well, they’re still vomiting everywhere but I’m grateful to have them with us at the ripe old kitty age of fourteen.

And you thought all I ever talked about was my writing. Wait for it….

The writing. It’s been a tremendous year from my writing. I spent the early part of the year planning and world building a novel and characters to write Winter Warrior. I wrote 8 chapters, and revised three of them for submission to Viable Paradise. I was accepted into the 2012 class and attended the workshop in October. Being accepted was only half as exciting as actually attending.  I’ve written since the workshop: two short stories and a novella. I’ve been revising some older items that needed a clean up post workshop. I gave one of the new stories a serious overhaul, which will go into submissions very shortly. This is good, but I definitely note that this year was a “quality” year as opposed to “quantity”. I wrote some really good stories, and spent lots of time learning about my writing and figuring out how to fix what needs fixing.

I attempted Write1Sub1 for the second year in a row. Since the quantity angle didn’t quite work, I didn’t make my W1S1 goals. I’ll be trying again in 2013.

Writing Friends. Between WorldCon and Viable Paradise, I met a lot of people who were previously screen names and email addresses to me before. There were personalities behind those avatars, but there isn’t anything like meeting those people in person and seeing them for who they really are. I met a bunch of people whom I had no idea existed, who have become part of a special circle of friends. We may not talk much or see each other often, but the bond is there. I hope to try and keep these new friendships going in 2013.

Here’s the official count for 2012:

  • ·         Novel Draft: Winter Warrior – in progress 26/80k
  • ·         Short Story Drafts 6
  • ·         Novella Drafts/Conversions 1
  • ·         Short Story Revision: 11
  • ·         New Submissions: 4
  • ·         Short Story Submissions: 80
  • ·         Short Story Rejections  86
  • ·         Short Story Acceptance: 1
  • ·         Critiques: 22
  • ·         Reading: 23
  • ·         May SAD = 12 outlines
  • ·         VP 16 application work (26k written, 8k revised)
  • ·         Worldcon 8/30-9/3
  • ·         Viable Paradise 16 10/7-12
  • ·          W1S1 Monthly (faltering progress)

 

Let’s look ahead to 2013, shall we? I’ve learned a lot that I need to put to use. (Not that I haven’t, mind you, but it’s one of those use-it-or-lose-it notions.)  The novel needs to be finished and revised. I’d like to get it out to critiquers by the end of 2013 in hopes of revising it for submission in 2014. I’m also keeping up with the short fiction.

 

Monthly Writing Goals

  • Novel Writing: Winter Warrior – Jan, Feb, Mar (15k monthly/5k weekly)
  • Novel Revision: Winter Warrior – April – October
  • Short Story (Write 2 – Revise 3 – Submit 1)
  • Blog: 4-8x
  • Critique: 4
  • Read: 2-3

 

This means Write 1 Sub 1 again. This means FMWriters’ May Story-A-Day Challenge. This means getting my schedule back on track, fast. I’m getting back to my morning workouts, which will help my fitness goals. Those aren’t as complex as the writing goals, fortunately, but I’ll be evaluating them monthly as well. I’ll be training for a 5k in May, so the running needs to get back on track. I’d like to be able to run the full race course as opposed to last year’s ½ run ½ walk.  To prepare this, I need to run three times a week, and lift weights twice. The new schedule I’ve devised should help, taking away the question of “what do I do today” and having the plan ready to go. In the recent past, overworking (trying to do too much across the board) and undersleeping have made mornings difficult. The 5am alarm doesn’t wake me. Instead, I go into autopilot and turn it off. I have discovered a new trick – using the alarm in my cell phone, which has a soft chime and a light that goes on when the chime starts. Getting the fitness on track will help get everything else to line up where and when it should.

So that’s the plan.

It IS a plan. These are not resolutions. I’ll be updating on the 1st of each month with my progress, but in between those updates, I plan on blogging a bit about my fitness adventures, and also about some cooking fun. I’m no chef, but I do love food, and I’d like to share my favorite recipes and experiments with you.

Thank you all for sticking me this year, and especially to those of you who reached out in my silence. I’m grateful for this blog and the people I keep in touch with because of it, my writing communities, and the ability to connect at any given moment. The writing life can be a solitary one, but with people like you, it isn’t. I wish you the best 2013 possible and if there’s some way I can help make it better, let me know.

Dawn

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Brain Disection and Distance

Work. There’s something about work that takes up one part of my brain’s focus, and that is different from the writing part of my brain. It’s a good balance because while I’m working, the writing part of my brain simmers quietly, every now and then popping a bubble out to where I can see and hear it enough to jot some notes down then go back to work. Then, when I get home, I give the work part of my brain a break and dive into the writing side. It’s a beautiful system, really, and my biggest worry is typically how do I make the writing side of my brain fuse with the work side of the brain when I get to the point I can write for a living.

Truthfully, I’ll worry about it when I get there, but I do have other creative habbits that I could use for the nonwriting creativy time. But for now, I’m having a different experience. I’m having an overload of the work side of the brain. I’m dreaming about work. I’m working from home extensively these past few days, trying to work on a project that’s been building up. I know completing this project won’t end the crazy work focus. My job has changed too much of late to even hope for that.

What I am hoping is that things slow down a little, enough for me to breathe. Enough for me to think about my writing. Honestly it’s only been a few days, but if feels like it’s been weeks since I’ve written. Writing is so much a part of me and how I think and what I do every day that I can’t live without it. I think have my stress is coming from not writing. Huh. Now that just popped into my head and out through my fingers without my even thinking about it. That must be the heart of this.

Maybe knowing that will calm me down enough to let the story sit a few more days without worrying. Knowledge is power. Belief gives strength.

A few more days of this, and then we go through phase two in a few more weeks.

I think I have to admit that November is not going to be a hugely productive month. And it’s only the fifth.

I started in on my “5 Minute Exercise” routine, to gear my body up for the fitness training I’m starting next week. It occurs to me, I can use this for my writing too. I know you can’t do much in five minutes, but a little at a time can add up. I could hit the story draft in progress, work in a notebook.

The work side of my brain could probably use a breather here and there.

All I know, is I’m so glad I backed out of NaNoWriMo.

Hope you’re having a better time than me. Happy Writing.

returning to balance

Life is balance. My metaphoric balance of responsibilities is about as bad as my physical balance: it needs work. So I’ve added fitness goals back into my routine, which consequently means I’ll be losing writing time, but getting better sleep, and maybe better able to wake up early for those AM writing sessions.

I’m using lunchbreaks for weights, classes, and running, and tonight is the first weekend day that I’ve managed to fit any exercise in. I’m up to 20 minutes on interval running. I think it’s a good start.

But now it’s off to the writing. I’m still working on Nighthunter and want to have it done soon so I can submit it.

trying to fit it all in

I’ve been horrible with my fitness and healthy eating plan, so I’ve finally figured out how to fix the food situation. First, no more buying food from the cafeteria at work. On Sunday, I’ll be prepping veggie and fruit containers to handle that. I have to test how long a made salad will last in an air tight container, and I have to remember to hardboil five eggs on Sunday while I’m prepping my food. I managed to eat healthy for 3 workdays this week, which happened to be the days I was able to get up earlier.  So it all ties in.

But the exercise? I’ve been walking during lunch on the nice days, but walking isn’t enough. I need a way to fit in weights and max cardio. Walking should be a bonus. Unfortunately, it looks like I’m going to have to mess with my writing schedule to fit this in. My least productive writing time is the evening session, so do I give that up to do a dvd workout after the kids go to bed? I’d still be able to fit in my reading afterward. Having the new laptop will help too – maybe I can get a half hour of writing related stuff in. I’m going to have to play with this. I was only planning on using 3 lunches a week at work for writing, the other two for fitness. I have a hard time with running a different schedule from day to day, but I think this is what I’ll have to do. Even play it by ear– if it’s a lunch workout day, then I write in the evening. If it’s a writing lunch, I work out in the evening.

The problem with that, is betwen the day job and getting the kids sorted out, the rest is kind of relfex. “It’s 8:15pm so I need to be at my computer writring”, etc. I like reflex. It’s what makes my schedule work. I think I could reduce my 8×11 weekly schedule sheet down to an index card and print it off so it’s more accessible in my purse calendar which I look at daily, rather than in my writing folder, which doesn’t come out until I sit down to write.

And the bad news is this gets adjusted 2-3 times a year based on the amount of sunlight available to drive home in after work. Which means I’d lose my after work writing time November through January.

Damn it, I need to be more flexible. 🙂 Or move someplace where the sun shines more in the winter. 😀 Better wait for the bestseller for that . . .